Another week of New Zealand teams showing their flair, especially the Blues who seem out to prove something this year with two Sirs in John Kirwan and Graham Henry as their coaching pair. They will be even more pleased with the way their forwards were able to dominate the Crusaders and hold on to the ball for multiple phases to put plays together. The Hurricanes went down to the Reds at home, which either indicates that there is more fire power in the Australian conference than we think, or the Reds have now created a real fortress for themselves. Not much can be taken from the Rebels loss to the Waratahs, they’ll have to be tested in the other two conferences.
After a good first half against the Chiefs the Cheetahs flopped to a huge loss in a second half they’d rather forget. Although the Chiefs are a quality team, you can’t expect to win against most Super Rugby teams making the errors they did. The Bulls were pushed to the limit by what most believe to be Australia’s and thus this competitions weakest team. The way they almost effortlessly scored twice to take back the game just maybe indicates that complacency was their biggest obstacle but it’s too early in the competition to be sure. A close affair between two of the competitions top teams can be seen as disappointing and boring or maybe these guys played so hard they made each other look bad?
Our Bokbaramoter team is mostly represented by the two winning South African sides with 7 for the Sharks and 6 for the Bulls and the Stormers making up the numbers with 2.
15. Louis Ludik
Still one of the most reliable fullbacks in South Africa.
14. Sampie Mastriet
He’s not easy to get a hold of, looks to be an exciting prospect.
13. Lionel Mapoe
Not yet into his best form with the Bulls, but getting there – he looked more comfortable in the 13 jersey.
12. Frans Steyn
The added responsibility of captaincy has not been able to stop him from making his big runs over the opposition midfield.
11. Lwazi Mvovo
He’s working hard and it’s paying off. We always knew if he got closer to the ball he would be be dangerous.
10. Morne Steyn
The opposition basically ushered him through a gap for his try, but his general game has been back to his usual clinical best.
9. Nic Groom
It was hard to pick a scrummy in the SA conference, we gave Groom the nod this week based on a clean performance.
8. Ryan Kankowski
Although we sometimes still miss the Kanko who could run through a defence from anywhere on the field, the solid performances he has put in recently has shown that he has everything you want in a Number 8.
7. Jean Deysel
It will be great if he can stay injury free for a season. He’s looking in fine form already.
6. Arno Botha
Although the Bulls missed a genuine open side flanker, with the Force giving them some trouble on the ground, Arno cannot be blamed for playing his natural game and doing it well.
5. Andries Bekker
As always he gave his opposition trouble at lineout time, but also got involved in the loose whenever he got the chance.
4. Flip vd Merwe
It seems he wants to reclaim his spot in the Bok jersey in the absence of Eben Etzebeth. He was a strong ball carrier, right in the middle of the two Bulls pushover tries and stayed away from penalties.
3. Jannie du plessis
The way the Sharks are scrumming at the moment it will be difficult to pick anyone else.
2. Chiliboy Ralepelle
At this stage he is not doing anything too flashy, but he’s by far the most clinical of the SA conference hookers.
1. Beast Mtawarira
Another huge scrumming performance, he needs to get off his heels when taking a pass though.
15. Gareth Anscombe, 14. Frank Halai, 13. Rene Ranger, 12. Bundi Aki, 11. Julian Savea, 10. Aaron Cruden, 9. Nick Phibbs, 8. Peter Saili, 7. Luke Braid, 6. Steven Lautau, 5. Brodie Retallick, 4. Rob Simmons, 3. Ben Afeaki, 2. Ged Robinson, 1. Ben RobinsonTweet